A: This is a great question. Dieting isn't easy, and though meal delivery diet programs already take most of the work out for you, everyone needs some motivation and advice along the way. That's why some of the top diet programs, like Jenny Craig, Bistro MD and Nutrisystem, offer personal support and consultations.
- Jenny Craig, one of the most well-known of the diet programs we review offers both at-home and in-center support, which are two different plans. With in-center support, you will meet privately with a consultant at one of over 650 local Jenny Craig centers each week. Your consultant will help motivate you, help you overcome challenges and track your progress. You will also pick up your meals at these meetings, which you can purchase one week at a time with no ongoing obligation. Though we did not test the quality of the in-centrer consultations, we do have experience with their at-home, over the phone support. While the consultant does discuss goals and troubles the weekly phone call seemed more like a sales pitch to keep us on the program rather than a consultation.
- Moving on to the service we coined "most gourmet," Bistro MD boasts support from licensed dietitians. With your Bistro MD subscription, you get unlimited access to a team of dietitians at no additional cost. Whether you need to ask a health question or voice a concern, they are there to talk with you. They can also help you adjust your weekly Bistro MD meals and help you plan your own weekend meals if you are on the 5-day plan.
- Although Nutrisystem isn't the highest ranking or best tasting service in our diet program rankings, their membership includes access to weight loss counselors and dietary consultants. The counselors are there to help motivate you and help you through any problem areas, while the dietary consultants can address specific nutrition questions and assist you with meal plan adjustments for special dietary needs, like food allergies.
Read full reviews, get discounts and compare all of the diet programs we review by visiting our diet program comparison chart.
A: If you're looking for a top-rated meal delivery program with free shipping, Bistro MD is currently offering free shipping to NextAdvisor readers with the coupon code NextAdFreeShip. Bistro MD is a top ranking diet meal delivery service that won the title "Most Gourmet" in our diet program rankings. It tastes great too, ranking third in our annual diet program taste test. Read the full review and sign up here.
Diet-to-Go, which you can read about here, landed first place in our rankings and is the best tasting service we review. While they do not offer free shipping, they do offer our readers a 20% discount on any order with coupon code NEXTADVISOR20 and a local pickup option. The fresh local pickup option is available if you live in the Washington DC Metro area (including Northern Virginia and Suburban Maryland), Baltimore area, Greater Philadelphia (including South New Jersey) or the San Francisco Bay area (including East Bay).
Q: I want to go on the Nutrisystem diet but am worried about the taste, do you know if it's any good?
A: Because taste is important when trying to stick to a diet, we performed a blind and independent taste test on each of the top meal delivery programs, including Nutrisystem. The good news is that there are a couple of great tasting diet programs out there, the bad news is that Nutrisystem isn't one of them. The food wasn't terrible; however, the meals in their basic monthly dieting plan are all shelf-stable, so they don't necessarily taste fresh and aren't particularly satisfying. You are supposed to add your own fruits and veggies to the program, so that should help a bit.
If you're looking for the best tasting diet meal delivery program, then you should definitely look into Diet-to-Go, which ranked first place in our taste test for their breakfast, lunch and dinner meals. This service is affordable and is available for home delivery as well as local store pick-up in select U.S. cities. Read our full review of Diet-to-Go and see how it compares to other diet programs here.
Need a little extra spending cash for the summer months? We are giving away a total of $500 to 4 of our lucky Google+ followers! We will be drawing 4 winners over the course of a month. The first winner, picked March 22, will win $50. The second winner, picked on March 29, will win $100. The third winner, picked on April 5, will win $150. And the last winner, picked on April 12, will win $200. You must follow all instructions below to enter. Good luck!
First, follow us on Google+:
Next, answer a few questions for us:
(OPTIONAL) Enter your email to sign up for our newsletter
Terms and Conditions for NextAdvisor $500 Giveaway
- To be eligible, participants must fill out the survey by the closing date, April 11, 2013 at midnight PST.
- No purchase is necessary to participate in this contest. Participants who don’t have Facebook or Internet access can send a postcard with their name and address to 1110 Burlingame Ave. Suite 201, Burlingame, CA 94010
- Anyone over the age of 18
- Each participant may enter only once. All additional entries will be disqualified
- Participants must be citizens of the United States and must have a valid ID and U.S. mailing address to apply.
- Contest opens: March 13, 2013
- Contest closing: April 11, 2013
- Drawing of winner: March 22, 2011; March 29, 2011; April 5, 2011; Grand Prize: April 12, 2011
- There will be a $50 prize (March 22), a $100 prize (March 29), a $150 prize (April 5) and a $200 prize (April 12). (All prizes are in USD.)
- The Sponsor and Promoter of this Contest is NextAdvisor Inc.
- Participants may not be employees of NextAdvisor, connected advertising and promotional agencies and their respective affiliates and associates or such employees' immediate family members and persons with whom such employees reside.
- NextAdvisor retains the right to extend or alter the contest including closing date without prior notification.
- Incomplete entries will be disqualified.
- Proof of identity must be produced on request.
- Decision of the winner is final. No correspondence will be entered into except with the winning entrants.
- By claiming the prize, the winners authorize the use, without additional compensation, of his or her name for use in promotional/advertising efforts in any medium (including and without limitation, radio broadcasts, newspapers and other publications in television or film releases, slides, videotape, and distribution over the internet) which NextAdvisor may deem appropriate.
- In accepting the prize, the winner acknowledges that NextAdvisor may not be held liable for any loss or damage associated with accepting or using the prize.
- By submitting an entry, participants acknowledge their acceptance and understanding of these rules.
- Any false information provided within the context of the contest by any participant concerning identity, mailing address, telephone number, email address, ownership of rights or non-compliance with these or the like may result in the immediate elimination of the participant from the contest.
- NextAdvisor reserves the right in its sole and unfettered discretion at its sole discretion to choose winners.
- NextAdvisor further reserves the right to disqualify any entry that it believes in its sole and unfettered discretion infringes the rights of any third party, otherwise does not comply with these Official Rules, or violates law.
- NextAdvisor further reserves the right to disqualify any participant who tampers with the submission process or any other part of the contest. Any attempt by a participant to deliberately damage any web site or undermine the legitimate operation of the contest is a violation of criminal and civil laws and should such an attempt be made and NextAdvisor reserves the right to seek damages from any such participant to the fullest extent of the applicable law.
- NextAdvisor reserves the right at its sole discretion to cancel, terminate, modify or suspend the contest.
- This contest is subject to all federal laws of the United States of America. These rules shall be governed by, subject to, and construed in accordance with federal laws. If any provision(s) of these Rules are held to be invalid or unenforceable, all remaining provisions hereof will remain in full force and effect.
Q: I'd like to lose some weight before Valentine's day, which meal delivery diet program should I choose? Also, which will deliver to me the fastest so I can start dieting?
A: If you're trying to shed a few pounds before Valentine's day, or just want to kickstart your weight loss journey now, we've got a couple tips on how to choose the right diet meal delivery program:
How to choose:
Taste. If you diet doesn't taste good, it will be much harder to stick with. That is why we conducted a blind taste test of the top meal delivery diet programs. As you can see on our taste test page, we had 10 men and women taste and rate the food from 5 of the top diet programs. Diet-to-Go came out on top, followed by Jenny Craig, Bistro MD (last year's winner), Nutrisystem and eDiets, in that order.
Budget. How much money are you willing to spend on your diet program? Nutrisystem has the cheapest plans, but you can only order a month's supply of food, the cheapest being $229.99/month, which comes out to $8.21/day. If you just want a week or 2 worth of food, then we suggest Diet-to-Go (the #1 best tasting) or Jenny Craig, which are both reasonably priced and offer weekly plans.
Which service delivers the fastest:
eDiets has very specific cut-off times and so your order may take a little longer, but in general, all of the diet programs are delivered within about 3-4 business days. If you live in the Washington DC Metro area (including Northern Virginia and Suburban Maryland), Baltimore area, Greater Philadelphia (including South New Jersey) and the San Francisco Bay area (including East Bay), then you can schedule fresh pickups from stores like Walgreens near you with Diet-to-Go.
Though Nutrisystem and Diet-to-Go are both popular meal delivery diet programs, they have some major differences that people should look into before signing up for either. Important factors in choosing the right diet meal delivery service include the pricing and plans they offer, taste and the type of meals you're looking for in your everyday meals. We take a look at how each service stacks up in these categories:
Service Plans. Nutrisystem only offers a monthly plan, where you pay for 28 days up front. The cheapest plan they offer is the Basic plan with auto-delivery for women, which is $229.99, coming out to just $8.21/day. Note that even if you choose auto-delivery to get the lower price, you can cancel the service within the month to avoid being charged again. Nutrisystem's plans come with breakfast, lunch and dinner. On the other hand, Diet-to-Go offers 5-day and 7-day plans, with the option of just getting lunch and dinner meals, or breakfast, lunch and dinner. With the current NextAdvisor 20% discount for Diet-to-Go, the most affordable plan is the 5-day lunch and dinner plan for $76.79, which comes out to $15.36/day. Though it's a bit pricier, as you'll learn further in this post, it's much tastier.
Taste. In our recent meal delivery diet taste test, Diet-to-Go scored first place out of 5 diet programs, while Nutrisystem placed fourth. Though Nutrisystem moved up from last place since our 2012 diet taste test, they still faltered in the taste department, with breakfast scoring 2 out of 5 stars, lunch getting 3 out of 5 stars and dinner receiving 2.5 out of 5 stars. If you want to learn more about Diet-to-Go offerings, check out some sample menus here.
Type of meals. If you're looking for an on-the-go option, then Nutrisystem is your plan. Most of their food is shelf-stable, and usually take 30 seconds to 2 minutes to heat up. With Nutrisystem, it's very important to add a lot of your own fruits and vegetables when on the diet. Diet-to-Go offers full meals, with sides like juice for breakfast, and small salads with their protein options.
To find out more about each of these services and see how they stack up against other popular programs, check out our meal delivery diet programs comparison chart.
There are a variety of diet meal delivery programs out there that boast about delicious, pre-packaged food that can help you lose weight. But "delicious" isn't always the case. At NextAdvisor, we were skeptical about how these diet meals actually taste, so we tested them ourselves. Like our taste tests back in October 2010 and January 2012,we ordered meal plans out-of-pocket from Jenny Craig, Nutrisystem, Diet-to-Go, Bistro MD and eDiets as a regular consumer would, unbeknownst to the diet companies themselves. Ten individuals participated in our taste test, rating the taste and appearance of multiple breakfast, lunch and dinner dishes from each service. We allowed our tasters to write comments as well, which were very entertaining to read. These ranged from "Yummy!" to "Tastes like nothingness."
We took the results and developed the official Meal Delivery Taste Test. As you can see here, we split up the ratings into breakfast, lunch and dinner, just in case prospective dieters have a certain meal of the day they look forward to the most. Most importantly, each program's overall rating will help our readers decide which diet program is the best bang for their buck — if the food doesn't taste good, the diet will be harder to stick with.
Because these programs are constantly changing their menus, we've conducted this taste test for the past 3 years so our readers can get the most up-to-date information possible. This year, Diet-to-Go came out on top as best tasting meal plan, followed by Jenny Craig, Bistro MD, Nutrisystem and eDiets Fresh Prepared. If you're interested in finding out more details about each of these programs, check out our diet meal delivery comparison chart.
Already convinced that you'll be most successful with Diet-to-Go? They are currently offering NextAdvisor readers a 20% discount with coupon code NEXTADVISOR20. To take advantage of the deal, click any Diet-to-Go signup link on our site, and enter in the coupon code at checkout. Happy dieting!
Did you resolve to get in shape in the New Year? You're not alone. Losing weight and exercising more are some of the most common resolutions each New Year, and gyms and personal trainers see a huge annual jump in business around January 1st. But how long does that motivation last? The University of Scranton Journal of Clinical Psychology reported that by the end of January, about 64% of resolvers are still plugging away at their fitness goals, while six months later that number will have dropped to just 44%. So how can you make sure you're in that lucky 44% who make it more than six months?
Interested in the science of willpower and motivation? Stanford University psychologist Dr. Kelly McGonigal's book The Willpower Instinct: How Self-Control Works, Why It Matters, and What You Can Do to Get More of It, based her wildly popular course The Science of Willpower, explains the science behind willpower and showcases some great techniques for increasing your willpower and directing it at your most important goals.
If you're short on time, you can listen to it with the audiobook version, and if you have a kindle, Audible and Amazon can even sync the audio and kindle versions using whispersync, so you can switch back and forth seamlessly without losing your place.
And you're not restricted to that one book, either. With an Audible.com subscription, you get one credit (usually equal to one book) each month, but you can also check out Audiobooks.com if you'd like to be able to stream unlimited audiobooks, kind of like Netflix's Instant stream feature.
Try Something New
Looking for a new workout routine without a trainer? You can also stream a wide range of exercise videos online, some of them for free with a Hulu Plus or Amazon Prime account. Be sure to take a look at videos for different kinds of exercises. You can try out everything from Yoga and Pilates to kettle bells and boot camps. Not into a subscription service? You can download individual videos with Amazon, or check out iTunes for a different selection.
Don't get bored with your diet plan. You can sign up for an online diet program and either cook your own meals according to the plan or order food all ready to go from the company. Worried about how it will taste? We conducted a blind tasting of all the programs we've reviewed and you can read what we thought here.
Sometimes all you need is something to keep you distracted while you plough through your workout. No matter what you like or where you exercise, you can find something great to watch or listen to. Audiobooks sites offer just about everything, from the New York Times to the latest crime novels, and Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon have a wide range of great shows and movies you can watch on the treadmill.
Better than watching the gym TVs or listening to music you don't enjoy, with your own audiobook or a movie on your phone or tablet, you can pause what you're watching or listening to when you're done with your workout and pick it up again next time, or even just when you get home.
Q: I am interested in a low fat, low carb diet. I am a very picky eater and want to know if you have a listing of the Diet-to-Go menu online?
A: If you want the best tasting meal delivery diet program, Diet-to-Go is definitely the right choice. This program ranked number one in our annual meal delivery diet food taste test we published earlier this month, and they're currently offering our readers a 20% discount with coupon code nextadvisor20. Diet-to-Go has three different menus — Traditional, Vegetarian and Low-Carb. While the microwaved food on your plate won't look quite as pretty as their professional photos below, at NextAdvisor we tried their traditional plan and can attest to its tastiness. Below you can see some sample meals from each plan.
Diet-to-Go plans are slightly customizable if you have any dietary restrictions or dislikes. Check out this short video tutorial that takes you through the process of selecting a meal plan and ordering from Diet-to-Go. Click here to read our full review of Diet-to-Go and be sure to check out our taste test. When signing up, don't forget to use the coupon code nextadvisor20 to get your 20% discount.
The Traditional plan is low-fat and approved for diabetics:
The Vegetarian plan is also low-fat and approved for diabetics. Note that it does include dairy and eggs:
The Low-Carb plan consists of 30 net carbs per day and is slightly more expensive:
Just in time for everyone's New Year's resolutions, Diet-to-Go is offering NextAdvisor readers 25% off their first order with coupon code NEWYEAR2013. To take advantage of this deal, click on the Diet-to-Go sign up link here before Tuesday, January 8th, and enter the coupon code at checkout.
Signing up for a meal delivery diet program is a great way to kickstart your weight loss in the new year. Having full meals delivered straight to your door takes the work out of dieting, letting your body get used to a particular amount of calories so you can then maintain a healthy lifestyle on your own. Diet-to-Go ranks highly in our meal delivery diet comparison thanks to its fresh and tasty meals, as well as the convenience of being able to pick up the food at a store near you or have it delivered directly to you. Click here to read our full review of Diet-to-Go and and don't forget to check out our meal delivery comparison page to see how it stacks up.
Disclosure: NextAdvisor.com is a consumer information site that offers free, independent reviews and ratings of online services. We receive advertising revenue from most of the services we review. Our editors thoroughly research and whenever possible test each service we review and offer their honest opinions about each one. We are independently owned and operated and all opinions expressed on this site are our own.